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26  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: The Present Israel-Palestine Conflict Thread on: July 17, 2014, 10:35:02 am
This whole conflict is essntially the radical Palestinians and radical Israelis killing each other with the moderates being unwilling to reign them in.

Pretty much this is why I gave up on the whole "Israel Palestine" issue many, many years ago. It has gone on for time immemorial and it will continue to go on long after we're ground into dust, my friend.
27  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Ukraine Crisis on: July 17, 2014, 10:33:05 am
Russia has shot down a Ukrainian fighter jet flying in Ukrainian airspace.

This is after shooting down a high altitude Ukrainian military transport plane last week.

They are openly engaging in acts of war now.
28  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: The Ebola Thread on: July 16, 2014, 12:49:16 am
Part of the problem is the incentives are all Fuked up. 80-90 percent of people die, so people see the sick going into these treatment centers relatively healthy and not come out. So if you're sick, there's no incentive for you to go to these treatment centers. But for the rest of us, we need then to go there to be isolated. That's why if there are experimental treatments they should start trying them now. The downside is pretty low. But these big pharmaceutical companies won't give it a high priority because there's no money in it. Some if the main research on ebola right now is being funded by the Canadian government and the DoD. Because the government knows that this is a national security issue.
29  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: The Ebola Thread on: July 16, 2014, 12:11:47 am
So what do you think the end game is here Beet, should us non-poors in non-tropical places be worried?

No one knows what the end game is but the top experts in the field have says that it spreading outside of Africa is a very real possibility. With a symptom free incubation period of 21 days and thousands of people crossing borders every day I don't see what there is to stop it.

The EU has provisioned 500,000 euros and this alone will allow Medicines Sans Frontiers, the Red Cross and the Red Crescent a significant expansion of resources. 500,000 euros! Obama has asked for 500 million for Syria alone, and 3.7 billion for some kids on the border. This is a rounding error we're talking about. Yet it will make a huge difference at this point in time to stop this outbreak. Have you seen pictures of JFK hospital in Liberia? The largest hospital in the country... Google it. This is what we are dealing with here. Last Thursday a pregnant woman died if ebola there and now all the staff are running around like headless chickens, and without protective gear, according to one reporter. $1 million is going to make a huge difference. Six months from now, $1 billion might not be enough. Yet it's like spitting in the wind here...
30  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Pew polls the world on opinions of the US, China, etc. on: July 15, 2014, 10:27:51 pm
Whats with the sudden 20 point spike in China's approval of the U.S.? Is the popularity of shows such as House of Cards and movies such as Transformers improving the U.S. image there?
31  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Ukraine Crisis on: July 14, 2014, 12:00:49 am
Looks like Russian invasion may be imminent- a stray shell has landed on the wrong side of the border.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/07/13/ukraine-crisis-consequences-idUSL5N0OX2E120140713

Ukraine must cool down now. They cannot give Putin a pretext for invasion.
32  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: The Ebola Thread on: July 07, 2014, 10:42:24 pm
Lancet warns many cases of ebola may be going undetected, particularly in Sierra Leone:

Quote
"At present, there is little incentive for patients to seek professional diagnosis of suspected Ebola. Laboratory testing can be expensive (especially when a panel of tests is required for differential diagnosis), is unlikely to change the course of treatment, and might stigmatise an infected patient and their family."

It added: "Even if a patient wanted to be tested for Ebola, few (if any) laboratories in the region have the capacity to safely test a biosafety level 4 pathogen."
...
Bo has fewer than 15 doctors for a population of more than 150,000, a situation that is common across Sierra Leone as well as in Guinea and Liberia, the other countries where the epidemic is unfolding, the letter said.

Link
33  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Why is 'Hard Choices' bombing? on: July 07, 2014, 07:13:13 pm
It's a bad title that has a slightly negative connotation. Who wants to read a book about "Hard Choices"? Most politicians book titles are either upbeat or a convey clear message. This one may be accurate but it's not clear where it goes. That being said I think this maybe a blessing in disguise- she doesn't want the hype building too high, too early.

A bad title is going to sink a book written by Hillary Clinton?

That it's written by Hillary Clinton is the only reason anyone is buying it at all. This book clearly wasn't written to kick off a campaign. Most likely she's still genuinely undecided about running.
34  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Why is 'Hard Choices' bombing? on: July 07, 2014, 06:03:59 pm
It's a bad title that has a slightly negative connotation. Who wants to read a book about "Hard Choices"? Most politicians book titles are either upbeat or a convey clear message. This one may be accurate but it's not clear where it goes. That being said I think this maybe a blessing in disguise- she doesn't want the hype building too high, too early.
35  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Arab-Americans Tell Census, 'We're Not White' on: July 05, 2014, 04:55:37 pm
But perhaps most importantly, you'd still be considered White by the Census anyway since Hispanic is not a separate category.

That's the thing though. The Census shouldn't be trying to force people into a category they don't want to be in. Not all Hispanics are as 'white' as Toomey, or whatever the most European Hispanics out there are. If they want to identify as non-white mestizo, it's a legitimate ethnicity as much as say, Chinese is. And yes, 'Asian' is not a race either, but a continent. This is why we should stop categorizing people by race and just use ethnicity instead. In the real world ethnicity is what matters, to the extent that such things matter.

But there is such a category. They mostly check "Hispanic" and "Other race". No one is trying to argue that mestizos are "white", but the idea that anyone with 100% European ancestry is not "white" is downright absurd and a pretty literal example of Insane Troll Logic.

So why was the KKK railing against Roman Catholics in the 1920s?

My point is that race is a social construction. A person who is at the top of the color hierarchy in Brazil may become an effective minority if he moves to the middle of Nebraska. Or he may not. But the Census doesn't dictate what somebody 'is'. It should reflect social realities. That is the only reason for categorizing people based on looks/genetic background to begin with. If it had no social relevance, I would agree with angus... but it does. 'Other' unfortunately is not a real category, it is more of a catch-all.
36  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Arab-Americans Tell Census, 'We're Not White' on: July 05, 2014, 04:39:08 pm
But perhaps most importantly, you'd still be considered White by the Census anyway since Hispanic is not a separate category.

That's the thing though. The Census shouldn't be trying to force people into a category they don't want to be in. Not all Hispanics are as 'white' as Toomey, or whatever the most European Hispanics out there are. If they want to identify as non-white mestizo, it's a legitimate ethnicity as much as say, Chinese is. And yes, 'Asian' is not a race either, but a continent. This is why we should stop categorizing people by race and just use ethnicity instead. In the real world ethnicity is what matters, to the extent that such things matter.
37  General Politics / Economics / Re: US unemployment rate decreases from 6.3% to 6.1% in July 2014 on: July 05, 2014, 03:25:04 pm
Depends on what you mean by 'recover.' I'd argue we were fully recovered from the Depression by 1942. By GDP, we had full recovery by 1937 or 1939 at the latest. Then again by GDP we had full recovery from 2008 some years ago.
38  General Politics / Political Debate / MOVED: If we had lost the war... on: July 05, 2014, 03:20:47 pm
This topic has been moved to Alternative History.

http://uselectionatlas.org/FORUM/index.php?topic=195050.0
39  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Arab-Americans Tell Census, 'We're Not White' on: July 03, 2014, 11:20:44 pm
Comedian Amer Zahr’s upcoming documentary challenges how the last Census classified Arab-Americans—as white—in the hopes that the next one will be different. But he’s not the only one who believes the nation’s decennial count misclassifies or just plain erases their identities. According to AJA, Hispanics comprise 90 percent of the 20 million individuals who, during the 2010 Census, checked “some other race.” Capturing how Americans increasingly do (or don’t) identify themselves matters as the Census determines everything from the apportionment of congressional districts to the distribution of $400 billion in federal aid programs and the enforcement of civil rights laws.

http://colorlines.com/archives/2014/07/arab-americans_tell_census_were_not_white.html

Thoughts? Personally, I think the census should just get rid of the race category altogether and replace it with ethnicity. That accurately reflects the whole classification of people are significant mostly as a social identity, insomuch as it matters because of the way people identify and are treated, not because of obscure 'scientific' differences.
40  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Quinnipiac University Poll: Obama worst president since WWII on: July 02, 2014, 09:27:00 pm
I actually don't think he's doing a bad job, apart from two issues. One, his response to the NSA leaks has been inadequate. He should have fired James Clapper and initiated more far-reaching reforms. Two, as you all know, I think the U.S. government should intervene to fight against the current ebola outbreak in Africa. However, I doubt the latter is the reason for Obama's high disapproval rating. Apart from that, I don't see how he's done such a horrible job up to now.
41  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Qatar on: July 02, 2014, 05:08:45 pm
One of the few places on earth where socialism could actually work-- if given the chance.
42  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Quinnipiac University Poll: Obama worst president since WWII on: July 02, 2014, 04:08:56 pm
Jeez. He's not that bad.
43  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: The Ebola Thread on: July 01, 2014, 07:24:08 pm
Indeed. I'm surprised at how little coverage this is getting, especially compared to developments in the Middle East.

Well, it get's little coverage because it affects poor, black people in African countries that nobody cares about.

If there were an Ebola outbreak in the White House, it would certainly get more media coverage.

But they live in the same world we do. Viruses don't know whether somebody is white or black or yellow or brown or red, or how much money is in your bank account. Viruses don't know borders either, those man-made invisible lines. Viruses have only dynamics, and the current trajectory of human response is not sufficient. This is one area where for the developed world to look beyond our own myopia would be an act of supreme self interest.

Also,

Quote
For Fischer, the story of one little boy was one of the most heartbreaking moments during his time in Guinea. "It was probably one of the most difficult things for me to see," he says. "Not just the vomiting, the diarrhea. But the despair that was present from having seen his mother die, from being surrounded by us foreigners and just being alone."

The child came "with barely a pulse," Fischer recalls. In the isolation ward, health care workers resuscitated him, giving him fluids and antibiotics. A package of cookies coaxed a faint smile. "But he was in a tough spot," Fischer says.

Then the medical team had to leave the isolation zone. The equipment they wear, Fischer explains, offers protection for only a limited amount of time. They had "a sliver of hope" they could get him through this.

That night, the boy began vomiting blood. He died alone, no family, no one by his side.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2014/06/27/326159053/for-a-9-year-old-with-ebola-a-sliver-of-hope-isnt-enough

Think of this story the next time you are feeling sorry for yourself.
44  General Politics / Political Debate / Re: Should the US drop Pakistan? on: July 01, 2014, 11:48:15 am
If you need to do something in Afghanistan (such as resupply the 10,000 troops, or fight back the Taliban), then you need Pakistan. It may be a lesser developed state than India but it's geographical position ensures it's importance for any case where the US wants to influence Central Asia. There really is no alternative.
45  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Cool chart showing the changing US murder rate over time on: June 28, 2014, 01:32:46 pm
I'm more surprised by the rise from 1900s to the 1930s... previously I thought the century 1860-1960 saw a steady decline in the murder rate.
46  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Gavrilo Princip on: June 27, 2014, 11:02:42 pm
A terrorist.
47  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Kim Jung Un threatens war over an upcoming James Franco and Seth Rogen movie. on: June 27, 2014, 10:40:08 pm
That's why they should have been taken them out in 1994. The longer we wait, the more painful it will be when the regime finally tips over the oblivion.

If # they need to be "taken out" wont it be safer to wait until China is ready to do it?
It seems they could do it at a lower cost and possibly parts of the army would desert to the Chinese, but never to the US.

# and Ill assume for the sake of argument that you are right about this.

EDIT: North Korea is actually an area where I trust Beijing to have it under control. They have as much interest in North Korea not going crazy as the West and better intelligence about the situation. If its necessary to intervene they will do it.

Jang Song Thaek would still be alive if Beijing had control. They might have had a leash when  Kim Jong Il was in, but not Kim Jong Un.

You misunderstand, I am not saying they control North Korea, but that they monitor the situation (with better info than the US) and are able to intervene with less terrible consequences than if the US does it.

Sure, if they do it. But they've shown no signs of doing so... they are still clinging to the delusion that North Korea is their friend, and a "buffer zone" against the U.S. By the time they realize Kim Jong Un is off the rocks it will be too late.
48  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / What are you doing for the Centennial of the assassination of the archduke? on: June 27, 2014, 10:26:39 pm
?
49  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Kim Jung Un threatens war over an upcoming James Franco and Seth Rogen movie. on: June 27, 2014, 10:24:07 pm
That's why they should have been taken them out in 1994. The longer we wait, the more painful it will be when the regime finally tips over the oblivion.

If # they need to be "taken out" wont it be safer to wait until China is ready to do it?
It seems they could do it at a lower cost and possibly parts of the army would desert to the Chinese, but never to the US.

# and Ill assume for the sake of argument that you are right about this.

EDIT: North Korea is actually an area where I trust Beijing to have it under control. They have as much interest in North Korea not going crazy as the West and better intelligence about the situation. If its necessary to intervene they will do it.

Jang Song Thaek would still be alive if Beijing had control. They might have had a leash when  Kim Jong Il was in, but not Kim Jong Un.
50  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Which of the following languages would you rather learn? on: June 27, 2014, 10:22:45 pm
Well I'd rather be fluent in Chinese so I can connect with my distant family :-) and communicate more easily with my parents, frankly.
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